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Mt. Hood and the Columbia River Gorge: Choose Your Adventure
Mt. Hood and the Columbia River Gorge: Choose Your Adventure
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Mountain and River Pursuits

The region’s varied terrain makes for adventures at all altitudes. At nearly 3,500 meters high, Mt. Hood has one of the only year-round ski seasons in the world. You'll find recreations options for snow, sun and everything between at unique resorts like Timberline Lodge, Mt. Hood Meadows and Skibowl. Descend from the mountain to explore waterfall hiking, go white water rafting on the Clackamas River and fish in the Columbia River Gorge. Head over to Hood River for more exciting waterfront excursions, where the Gorge's steep walls create wind conditions perfect for windsurfing and kiteboarding.

 

Dining and Drinks

Bountiful harvests are reflected in markets and menus around the region. Take your pick among dozens of independent farm stands, orchards, wineries and restaurants along the self-guided Hood River County Fruit Loop, East Gorge Food Trail and West Gorge Food Trail. Soak in the stunning views and tour boutique wineries on an electric bicycle. There are also a dozen craft breweries and cideries to try. Some noteworthy options: award-winning Thunder Island Brewing, beer brewed with glacially-sourced water at Mt. Hood Brewing Company, traditional English cider at Stone Circle Cider in Estacada and Freebridge Brewing, housed in a Gold Rush-era U.S. Mint building.

 

Take Alternative Transportation

One unique highlight of the Mt. Hood and Columbia River Gorge area is the ability to visit without needing your own car. A vast network of public and private transportation options can get you almost anywhere in the region you'd like to visit. Take the Mt. Hood Express, a public shuttle bus that runs from Sandy to Timberline Lodge with stops at scenic recreation areas along the way. The Columbia River Gorge Express – as well as a number of private shuttles – explores the Waterfall Corridor and Multnomah Falls before heading out to Cascade Locks, Hood River and The Dalles. For open-air thrills, rent a bike and cruise the communities that line the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area.

Mt. Hood and the Columbia River Gorge: Choose Your Adventure
Mt. Hood and the Columbia River Gorge: Choose Your Adventure
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Fun Fact

One of the many waterfalls in Oregon’s Columbia River Gorge
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The Columbia River Gorge has the greatest concentration of waterfalls in North America. There are more than 75 waterfalls along its 113 kilometers.

Art advertising the Columbia River Highway in Oregon
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The first scenic highway in the USA was the 121-kilometer Historic Columbia River Highway, also known as “King of the Roads.”

Approaching the summit of Mt. Hood in Oregon
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Mt. Hood is the highest peak in Oregon and boasts North America's longest ski season.

Must see places

Viewing Multnomah Falls, Oregon, from a scenic overlook

Multnomah Falls

Multnomah Falls is Oregon’s most-visited natural attraction and the tallest waterfall in the state. Visit when it’s at its most voluminous in winter and spring, as snowmelt feeds two cascading tiers along a 189-meter drop. The Multnomah Falls Lodge has a visitors’ center, gift shop and upscale restaurant. For a convenient and eco-friendly travel option, consider arriving via one of the many shuttles that service the Falls.

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Salmon fishing near Cascade Locks, Oregon

Brigham Fish Market

The Nez Perce, Umatilla, Warm Springs and Yakama Tribal Nations have historically called the Columbia River and its surrounding lands home. Today, get to know the diverse histories of these Indigenous peoples through one of their First Foods: Salmon. Find the locally sourced fish on menus throughout the Columbia River Gorge, including at Brigham Fish Market in Cascade Locks. The Indigenous and woman-owned eatery serves up seriously good smoked salmon, fish and chips and much more.

The Bridge of the Gods stretching over the Columbia River from Oregon to Washington

Bridge of the Gods

The stunning Bridge of the Gods connects Oregon to Washington over the Columbia River. It’s also part of the 4,279-kilometer Pacific Crest Trail, recently popularized in Cheryl Strayed’s book and film adaptation, “Wild.” Park the car and walk across the dizzying foot path for unparalleled views of the river below.

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Biking the Columbia River Highway

Historic Columbia River Highway

Tracing the Columbia River Gorge from Troutdale to The Dalles, the USA’s first scenic highway is steeped in history and natural beauty. The abundant waterfalls and green cliffs near Portland lead to a sunny plateau in Mosier and The Dalles. Along the way, visit museums, stretch your legs on hiking trails and explore Oregon Trail-era small towns. Can’t miss photo ops: Vista House at Crown Point, Bridal Veil Falls and Multnomah Falls.

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Mt. Hood’s Timberline Lodge tucked into the snowy mountainside

Timberline Lodge & Ski Area

More than 2 million visitors a year make Timberline Lodge & Ski Area one of Oregon’s top attractions. This National Historic Landmark is located on Mt. Hood and boasts 1,124 vertical meters and year-round snow sports – one of the few ski resorts in the world with this claim to fame.

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View of Mt. Hood from a Hood River farm

Hood River Fruit Loop

The Hood River Valley’s freshest (and tastiest) offerings are highlighted at u-pick farms, produce stands and eateries along the 56-kilometer Fruit Loop. Sample Oregon wine and cider, stock up on local produce, pick fresh flowers and bite into the juicy pears and apples that the region is famous for.

View from Rowena Crest in Oregon’s Columbia River Gorge

Rowena Crest

The stunning Columbia River Gorge spreads out before you at the Rowena Crest Viewpoint, located just off Highway 30 near the town of Mosier. Be sure to get a photo of the distinctive horseshoe curve in the highway below – it’s a highly photographed spot in Oregon. No filter needed for this view.

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